BLOGS
POSTED ON Wednesday, 06.22.2016 / 3:07 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Oilers Vice Chair Kevin Lowe was asked about the new Las Vegas team, announced by the NHL on Wednesday and his projection of their future success.

“I think it’s going to be a home run. Kudos to the National Hockey League for getting there first,” stated Lowe.

“They’ve got a beautiful building. I toured it back in February — it’s spectacular. Though not quite as nice as ours,” Lowe chuckled. “They’re going to have all the new bells and whistles, which is night.”

Lowe was also asked about the expansion rules surrounding the new team, which include clubs having the option to either protect seven forwards, three defencemen and one goaltender or eight skaters (any combination of defencemen and forwards) and one goaltender.

“They’re coming in under the best conditions ever in terms of expansion,” Lowe continued. “They’re probably going to have a strong team right out of the gate. They’ll have a strong fan base. So that’s a recipe for success.”

All first- and second-year professionals, as well as all unsigned draft choices, will be exempt from selection and will not be counted toward their club’s applicable protection limits.

|
|
|
POSTED ON Wednesday, 06.22.2016 / 2:31 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

The new Las Vegas expansion team was announced on Wednesday to join the NHL in the 2017-18 season. How does this affect the Oilers? The new team will play in the Pacific Division -- the same division as Edmonton.

This puts eight teams in the Pacific Division while seven teams remain in the Central Division. The Oilers will now play six of their division foes four times a season (two home, two away) and one team within their division five times (three home, two away or vice versa).

Among Central Division teams, they'll play each team three times (either two home, one away or vice versa).

Outside of the Conference, they will continue to play each team twice (one home and one away).

|
|
|
POSTED ON Friday, 06.3.2016 / 12:01 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

There are a number of players that the Oilers could potentially draft in the fourth spot. Oilers Director of Player Personnel Bob Green talked about a few of them.

Among the defencemen who will be available, Green was asked about Olli Juolevi, Mikhail Sergachev and Jakob Chycrun.

“Those three guys, they’re all good. They’re all a little bit different one way or the other. Physically, they’re good-sized kids. Juolevi is going to get bigger and stronger. Sergachev and Chycrun are big, strong kids already but they all move the puck really well. Sergachev may have a little bit more offence in him but Juolevi put up good numbers, as did Chycrun. They’re three really good defencemen.”

Up front, Jesse Puljujarvi and Matthew Tkachuk are two potential options who may be available at number four. Green talked about both.

“They’re high-end skilled guys. The biggest difference is probably size. Puljujarvi is a big kid and is strong. That’s a big part of his game, puck protection and everything else. Matthew (Tkachuk) is a really smart, clever player with the puck. He sees the ice very well and thinks ahead of the play an does a good job complementing Mitch Marner and Christian Dvorak this year. We watched him play last year with Auston Matthews and he did the same thing with him.”

|
|
|
POSTED ON Friday, 06.3.2016 / 11:56 AM MT
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

Oilers director of player personnel Bob Green was asked to give his thoughts on the talent level of the 2016 NHL Draft while at the NHL Scouting Combine in Buffalo.

“We’ve liked the draft right from the very beginning," Green enthused. "Obviously, the top end is very good. Everybody’s going to get a good player in the first round. There’s depth to it. You know that some of the kids later on are going to turn into players, you’ve just got to figure out which one it is.”

Green specifically talked about the four spot, which is being universally regarded as one of the very top spots in the second tier of prospects with Auston Matthews, Patrik Laine and perhaps Jesse Puljujarvi in the top tier.

“There’s some good forwards there (and) there’s some good defencemen there. They’re just good players. You want to take the best one at that point in the draft, for sure. We like the guys there. There’s a mix of positions: centre, left wing, D. There’s a nice combination of players and we like all of them.”

Whether the player the Oilers select is ready to step into the NHL right away next season won't be a determining factor based on who the team selects, but Green talked about what precisely is the factor which does decide whether a player can play right away.

“There’s things in their game that probably means they’re going to have to go back and play another year of junior or college. It usually boils down to their size and strength. A lot of them are good enough to play in the NHL, it’s a matter of whether or not they’re big enough and strong enough to compete with men yet.”

|
|
|
POSTED ON Friday, 06.3.2016 / 11:46 AM MT
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

The Edmonton Oilers have been in Buffalo, New York all week for the NHL Scouting Combine. They've been interviewing prospects -- 85 of them to be exact -- in anticipation of the NHL Draft later this month.

Oilers Director of Player Personnel Bob Green, who helps head up the scouting department, was asked about some of the benefits of this event.

“Just putting a face to the name of the player that you’ve been watching all year,” Green began. “We don’t get a chance to meet these kids during the course of the season. We’ve had our area scouts out and they’ve interviewed these kids during the year but it gives us a chance to meet these guys and talk to them.”

After a week's worth of interviews with all 30 NHL teams, the prospects will undergo a grueling physical test on Saturday (we'll have full coverage here on edmontonoilers.com). Green was asked about the importance of the interviewing and the physical aspect.

“It’s all important. We want to watch them work out as well. We have people here doing that. And just get a sense of what kind of shape they’re in. What type of body they have. Their ability to put on weight and muscle and just to get a sense of how big they can be.”

Following draft week, the scouting staff will get together leading up to the June 24 draft and reassess their rankings.

“We’ll continue to stay in touch. We’ll take a look at this past week and we’ll talk about these guys and see what we like, what we didn’t like and see how it’s going to affect where we have them ranked.”

Green did add that what goes on at the Combine will be a factor but not necessarily the determining factor on which player the team takes.

“You’ve gotta be careful. You can’t put too much stock into this. It’s just another part of the bigger picture of watching them.”

|
|
|
POSTED ON Tuesday, 05.10.2016 / 11:21 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

A third consecutive 3-2 overtime loss has pushed the Seattle Thunderbirds to the brink of elimination against the Brandon Wheat Kings.

Oilers prospect Ethan Bear assisted on the second Seattle goal, which came 13:05 into the opening period to give the T-Birds a 2-1 lead at the time. The goal came 38 seconds after Alexander True scored to tie the game up for Seattle.

The Thunderbirds would remain in the lead until 11:22 remained in the third. Edmontonian John Quenneville scored his second of the game to make it a 2-2 contest.

2:59 into overtime, Reid Duke scored to give the Wheat Kings the victory.

Bear’s assist gave him seven goals and 11 assists for 18 points in 16 playoff games. The 18-year-old defenceman leads all WHL blueliners in playoff scoring and is tied for eighth overall in points.

|
|
|
POSTED ON Friday, 04.8.2016 / 1:41 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers

The best way to relive all of the events and videos from Wednesday night's historic final game at Rexall Place as well as take a look back at the storied history of the building is to visit our Farewell Rexall Place page at edmontonoilers.com.

You can also view the panoramic image of the buliding at anthem time. If you were at the game, try and find yourself!

|
|
|
POSTED ON Sunday, 04.3.2016 / 3:30 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers



The Oilers will host the Vancouver Canucks on April 6 for their final home game in Rexall Place, before moving downtown to Rogers Place in the fall. The post-game farewell ceremony will host more than 100 Oilers alumni in attendance. Each day leading up to that game we are announcing five alumni who are scheduled to attend. Here are today’s five.

Mark Messier is second all-time in NHL history in points with 1,887 behind only Wayne Gretzky and as an Oiler he ranks third behind Gretzky and Jari Kurri with 1,034 points in 851 games. “The Moose” won six Stanley Cups — five in Edmonton — and is the only player to ever captain two different teams to the League’s ultimate prize. Messier won the Conn Smythe trophy as most valuable player in the playoffs in 1984, helping lead the Oilers to their first Stanley Cup.

Rod Phillips called over 3,500 Oilers games in his 37-year career. The number ‘3542’ along with Phillips’ name hangs in the rafters at Rexall Place after he retired as the ‘voice’ of the Edmonton Oilers on May 28th, 2010. Phillips started calling professional games in 1973 in the WHA with the Oilers and then continued with the team in the NHL in 1979. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2003.

Anson Carter was traded to the Oilers from Boston in November 2000 and played three seasons in Edmonton. Carter had 69 goals and 157 points in 211 games as an Oiler. In 12 NHL seasons, Carter had 202 goals and 421 points in 674 games but is perhaps best known for scoring the game-winning goal in overtime at the 2003 IIHF World Championship to give Canada the gold medal.

Boyd Devereaux was drafted by the Oilers in the first round, sixth overall in 1996. He played three seasons with the Oilers, scoring 15 goals and 46 points in 175 games before moving on to the Detroit Red Wings. He went on to play 11 seasons and 627 games, scoring 67 goals and 179 points.

Cory Cross played three seasons with the Oilers from 2002 to 2006 including the best season of his NHL career in 2003-04 when he had seven goals and 21 points in 68 games with a +9 rating. The Lloydmisnter, AB native and University of Alberta grad played 659 career NHL games with 34 goals and 131 points.

|
|
|
POSTED ON Saturday, 04.2.2016 / 3:30 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers



The Oilers will host the Vancouver Canucks on April 6 for their final home game in Rexall Place, before moving downtown to Rogers Place in the fall. The post-game farewell ceremony will host more than 100 Oilers alumni in attendance. Each day leading up to that game we are announcing five alumni who are scheduled to attend. Here are today’s five.

Oilers legend Paul Coffey’s number seven is up in the rafters at Rexall Place for a very good reason. In 532 games as an Oiler, he scored 209 goals and 669 points, including an astounding 48 goals and 138 points in 1985-86. The 48 goals is an NHL record for defencemen in one season and the 138 points is second all-time only behind Bobby Orr’s 139. In fact, Orr and Coffey are the only two defencemen in the list of top-10 seasons by a blueliner with each appearing five times. Coffey won three Stanley Cups with the Oilers, racking up 103 points in 94 playoff games including 37 in 18 games in 1985 — an NHL record which stands to this day. He was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1987 where he won one more Cup in 1991.

Brett Callighen joined the Oilers in 1976-77 and spent three seasons in the WHA and three seasons in the NHL. His best season was 1978-79 when he had 31 goals and 70 points in 71 games playing on a line with Wayne Gretzky and Blair MacDonald. Callighen, who had his career cut short due to an eye injury, had 145 points in 160 career NHL games, all with the Oilers. Over his entire Oilers career he had 290 points and 116 goals in 340 games.

Pat Price was one of the original NHL Oilers, joining the team in 1979-80 after being acquired from the New York Islanders. In Edmonton, the defenceman enjoyed two of the best seasons of his NHL career with a career-high 11 goals in 1979-80 and 32 points in 59 games in 1980-81. In his NHL career, the rough-and-tumble playmaker Price amassed 1456 penalty minutes and 218 assists in 726 games. He also added 43 goals and 12 points in 74 playoff games.

Scott Thornton was acquired by the Oilers in 1991 in a seven-player trade that saw Glenn Anderson, Grant Fuhr and Craig Berube go to Toronto and Thornton, Luke Richardson, Vincent Damphousse and Peter Ing arrive in Edmonton. At 20 years old at the time of the trade, Thornton spent the next five seasons in the Oilers organization. He played 209 games with the Oilers with 53 points before being traded to Montreal in 1996 in exchange for Andrei Kovalenko. Thornton had a successful NHL career with 285 points in 941 games spanning 17 seasons and six teams.

Mathieu Garon is perhaps best known for his improbable success with the Oilers in the shootout in the 2007-08 season. The goaltender stopped 30 of 32 shots to go 10-0 in the shootout, pacing the Oilers to 15 shootout wins that season — an NHL record which still stands today. Garon’s 10 shootout wins in one season is also tied for best all-time in NHL history for one goaltender. He had 26 wins that year with a 2.66 goals-against average. Overall, Garon played 341 career NHL games for six teams with 144 wins and a 2.82 GAA.

|
|
|
POSTED ON Sunday, 03.27.2016 / 3:30 PM MT
By Marc Ciampa - edmontonoilers.com / Inside the Oilers



The final game in Rexall Place history on Wednesday, April 6 and post-game farewell ceremony will feature 100+ Oilers alumni in attendance. So far we’ve announced 20 alumni and each day leading up to the game, we’ll announce five more who are scheduled to attend.

Craig Simpson was acquired by the Oilers in 1987 as part of a six-man trade that involved Paul Coffey heading to Pittsburgh and saw his career blossom that same season. Simpson had 56 goals in 1987-88, including 43 goals in 59 games as an Oiler. He added 13 more in 19 games in the playoffs to help lift the Oilers to their fourth Stanley Cup. In 419 games as an Oiler, Simpson had 185 goals and 365 points but more importantly had 36 goals and 68 points in 67 post-season contests, helping the Oilers to Cup victories in 1988 and 1990.

Ron Chipperfield was the first captain in Oilers history having played two seasons in the WHA and one in the NHL. In 202 games, Chipperfield had 83 goals and 191 points as an Oiler. His best performance was in the final WHA season when he had 32 goals and 69 points in 55 games and added nine goals and 19 points in 13 playoff games to help lead the Oilers to the Avco Cup Final.

Fredrik Olausson is perhaps best known for his time with the Winnipeg Jets, battling against the Oilers in a handful of playoff series in the 1980s but he also suited up in Edmonton for three seasons from 1993-94 through 1995-96. In 108 games as an Oiler, Olausson had nine goals and 44 points. In his entire NHL career, he played 1022 games with 147 goals and 581 points. 

Igor Kravchuk quarterbacked the Oilers power play for parts of four seasons from 1992-93 through 1995-96 netting 88 points and 27 goals in 160 games. Kravchuk played with six NHL teams throughout his 12-season career and had 64 goals and 274 points in 699 games. He added six goals and 21 points in 51 Stanley Cup Playoff games.

Georges Laraque was selected by the Oilers in the second round, 31st overall, in the 1995 NHL Entry Draft. Laraque played 490 games in Edmonton with 43 goals, 111 points and 826 penalty minutes. Known for his jubilant goal celebrations and one of the most feared enforcers in the NHL, Laraque was a huge fan favourite during his eight seasons in Oil Country.

|
|
|
INSIDE THE OILERS BLOG